David Wright played catch in the outfield at Citi Field prior to the Mets’ 5-1 loss to the Chicago Cubs Thursday night at Citi Field. It was his first baseball activity since undergoing surgery for a torn rotator cuff in his right shoulder and alleviating pressure in his back.
While it’s great he is committed to coming back and earning his salary to play the game he loves, he symbolizes the problems the Mets are as a baseball organization. Guys can stay and cash in their check with no accountability. No matter how bad they play or how hurt they are, the Mets will employ them with no consequences.
Wright last appeared in a major league game in May 2016, and in the last two years, he has been a presence on the disabled list than on the field. He has played a total of 75 games in the last two years, and even in those games, he was useless. What organization would continue to pay a guy and let him spend time on the disabled list? The Mets should have given their former star a buyout long time ago no matter how unpleasant it is. He has no future with them since he can’t be relied on to ever be healthy and play after undergoing three surgeries and going through spinal stenosis.
It’s not just Wright. The Mets have historically kept players on the roster no matter how useless they are under the Wilpons’ stewardship. They rather pay players to stink rather than be unemployed. It’s counterproductive. It’s worse to pay players who offer nothing to the team since other players could use their spot and be productive if those guys would go away. The Mets are sending the wrong message by saying that a player won’t lose his job despite how awful he is. There has to be accountability when a player is not doing his job.
There are couple of players on the roster that need to go away, and the Mets need to demote a closer just to send a message that losing won’t be tolerated anymore. There has to be accountability if the Mets ever want to be a winning franchise. There never has, and there never will be under the Wilpons. That’s a problem.
Hansel Robles has no business being on the Mets roster. It’s remarkable he is still employed considering he has been awful for the last two years. Teams normally give up on a player like that if he stinks, but not the Mets. They want to unleash his potential. They feel he can turn it around any day. They are still waiting even though everyone knows he’s a lost cause.
After the Mets had Seth Lugo on a pitch-count limit of 65 pitches (he threw 60 pitches in his four innings of his start against the Cubs), Robles came in to pitch the fifth inning. To the surprise of no one, it did not go well.
He walked Kyle Schwarber to start the inning. To his credit, he got two outs by striking out Ian Happ and Jose Quintana to pop out on a bunt. But this is where he would implode. He threw a wild pitch that would move Schwarber to second, and then he gave up a two-run home run to Ben Zobrist that would give the Cubs a 2-0 lead. It might as well be game over after that, which was since the Mets could not muster up any offensive attack the rest of the night.
Let’s face it. Callaway was in a no-win position last night. He had to use his awful bullpen since Lugo was not going to be stretched out after making his first start of the season. It wouldn’t matter which reliever he would entrust, but to use Robles as his first option is crazy. This is a quick way to lose a game.
Callaway should not be in a position to use Robles. The Mets need to call up anyone from Triple-A Las Vegas to take his spot. He can’t be any worse than this guy. This argument that they don’t have any options is a fallacy. There’s no purpose putting him on the roster when he offers nothing to the team. Thursday night should validate that.
Robles slept well knowing that he is still on the roster. He does not have to worry about being designated for assignment since the Mets enable this performance. Until the Mets actually do something, he will continue to implode.
Jose Reyes did not play Thursday night, and he shouldn’t be playing since he is hitting .145 with one home run and three RBIs. He has been an automatic out when he is playing. It’s been like this since his second return to the Mets.
There’s no way Reyes should be on the roster. But the Wilpons like him, so he will keep stealing money despite being useless. If this was Matt Harvey, he’s gone, but the Mets infielder is such a low maintenance guy that they would tolerate ineptness from him. It’s a horrible way to run a baseball operation.
Jeurys Familia blew a save last week that cost Jacob deGrom and the Mets a victory in the 2-1 loss to the Miami Marlins at Citi Field. Yes, the offense was terrible in that game, but his job is to close it, and he did not get it done. He has that uncanny ability to blow a big game whether it’s the World Series three years ago or the NL wild-card game two years ago. This is why he had to be demoted from a closer. It’s hard to ever trust him.
It’s not his fault and blowing saves are part of the game, but the Mets could have demoted him as a way to wake up this struggling comatose team that would start playing with a sense of urgency. Instead, they prefer to coddle him knowing that if he gets demoted, they lose him altogether.
To the Mets’ credit, they did not bring Dominic Smith up north after a poor spring training and they demoted Zack Wheeler to Triple-A Las Vegas to start the season after a poor spring training. Still when they enable Wright, Robles, Familia and Reyes rather than making them as an example in the name of accountability, there’s no reason to take them seriously as an organization.
Before they can be a winning team, they should learn the concept of accountability.